Kartikey & Saloni fell in love when they were 16 years old. Because they were so young, their parents had reservations about the relationship. After 6 years of commitment both families respected their decision to marry & everyone happily agreed to celebrate their wedding on February 14th in Jaipur, India. Colleen & I were lucky enough to be part of the amazing celebration!
The week-long rituals, ceremonies & festivities included:
Sunday, February 8th: Radhe-Krishna Bhakti Sandhya
In sign of their support, Jaimala's family hosted us for a night of live music, dancing and singing. It was an uplifting occasion perfect to kick of the week!
Monday, February 9th: Garba
Colleen & I decorated for the week's festivities & the guests learned a special dance to be presented on the day of the wedding! We enjoyed dancing, music, and a delicious dinner!
Tuesday, February 10th: Ganesh Matli, Lagan & Sangeet Samaroh
Both families came together to pray to Lord Ganesh- the God of wisdom, peace & luck. The ceremony was followed by dancing, singing, and Kartikey on the drums!
Wednesday, February 11th: Mehandi, Bhaat & Shame- Gazal
Saloni has her hands & feet decorated in intricate patterns with symbolic meanings. The wedding guests also got to enjoy traditional Mehendi. A gazal is understood as a poetic expression of both the pain of loss or separation and the beauty of love in spite of that pain. The gazal not only has a specific form, but traditionally deals with just one subject: love, specifically an unconditional and superior love.
Thursday, February 12th: Gode Bharai & Nritya-Sangeet Sandhya
Jaimala & Hitesh officially accepted Saloni as part of their family! Kartikey's sisters dressed Saloni & presented her with gifts.
Friday, February 13th: Ghudchadhi & Baraat & Reception
Kartikey travels to Saloni on a horse, accompanied by his family members. The journey became a large procession of friends & family that included music, lights & dancing
Saturday, February 14th: Panigrahana & Saptapadi
Kartikey took Saloni's hand in sign of their union and, said to be the most important part of the wedding, the couple circled seven times around the holy fire which holds & keeps the vows they make to one another. They are finally married!
It was beautiful week filled with love & laughter and Colleen & I are honored to have been a part of it. Thank you Jaimala, Hitesh, Kartikey & Saloni for including us on your special days - it was an experience that we'll never forget.